If I said every hit record made started on a small label before it was picked up and distributed nationally by a major label, it wouldn't be true. But there were at least hundreds, in reality probably numbering in the thousands, of examples that range from the huge hits, to records that never made it on either label. Often the small label was a small producer looking to have the big hit, maybe a producer that creates a "another" new label looking for success, or it could be an established small label that bigger labels looked to for a potential chartbuster they could distribute. In this section, I feature just those types of examples. My goal is not to show every label variation of each issue, but rather to discuss the first and second labels and explain and more importantly, show some differences. In some cases I have three records for specific reasons. There are two different pages showcasing these examples. This page is featuring the lesser known records that although they might have made a few charts here and there, they were much less popular overall than my companion page featuring some bigger hits.

Rovers - Why Ohh Music City
Rovers - Why Ohh Capitol
One of my favorite west coast labels is Music City. Located in Berkeley on Alcatraz Avenue, they put out some polished and mostly not so polished records in the 50's and 60's. This is one of just a couple records from the label that got increased exposure by a major label. Why-Ohh did well locally on the west coast, and peaked the interest of the Capitol label contingent. They issued it but it didn't really catch fire. The flip, "Ichi Bon Tami Dachi" is my favorite. Translated it means My Number One Girl Is You.
Perez Brothers - Ofie's
Perez Brothers - Wolfie

A really good two sided record from the Perez Brothers apparently was the only recording they made. Ralph and Louie Perez recorded "Dream A Little Dream" and "Truly Truly Yours" in 1963. The songs were not original, but were in fact remakes of songs by Fred Parris and the New Yorkers, and Robert and Johnny. The Perez Brothers were from Canoga Park, California, and it appears that the record was released on Offie's first. Offie's was run by Offie Martinez who had a radio show and a record store in Pacoima, CA. The backup group the Gents, included Danny Rosales and Sal Barragan. Notice the slightly different titles on both records.

satellites - Class
satellites - Malynn
The Satellites were best known for their work as the back up band for Bobby Day. They appeared on his hits for Class records out of Los Angeles. The members included David Ford, Earl Nelson, Curt Williams and Curly Dinkins. Looking at that lineup, you can see how connected they were to other groups. Earl Nelson was 1/2 of Bob and Earl and associated with the Pelicans, Voices, and the Hollywood flames. David Ford was with the Hollywood Flames as well. This record was originally issued on Class records in 1958, and then released on the local Malynn label.
Tonettes - Doe
Tonettes - ABC
The Tonettes are just my favorite girl group ever. They started out as the Claremonts on Apollo with one release. Why Keep Me Dreaming flipped with Angel Of Romance, and had some good action in 1957. In 1958, they recorded "Oh What A Baby" for the newly formed Apollo records subsidiary, Doe records. The record started gaining a ton of airplay up and down the Eastern seaboard, and it was leased to ABC for distribution. For more on the Claremonts and Tonettes, visit my web page HERE .
Squires - Mambo
Squires - Vita
Out of Pasadena, CA, the Squires have a wonderful history of fine vocal group records. Dewey Terry of Don And Dewey was a member of the group. Sindy was originally released on Lawrence H. Mead's Mambo label. It sold extremely well in the Los Angeles area, but the problem they faced was the name of the label. Buyers associated it with Latin or dance music. The label name was scrapped after just a few releases, and his Vita label was reactivated from earlier Los Angeles based production. Thus several records including this one was issued first on Mambo, then Vita. In this case, most of the copies of Sindy by the Squires, sold on Mambo. When the Vita label was issued, it was near the end of the record's run. As an odd addition, some of the Mambo label records actually used a "C" for Cindy instead of S (Sindy).
Nite Riders - Teen
Nite Riders - Swan
James "Doc" Starkes and the Nite Riders started recording as such in 1954. They released about a dozen sides on several labels over the course of their career. One of those labels was Teen records out of Philadelphia. A local hit, "Apple Cider" did well enough regionally, that another Philly label, Swan, picked it up for distribution. Great record, but it never made it big nationally.
From Asbury Park, New Jersey, the V Eights had the legendary singer Bobby Thomas on all but their first recording. The group lasted for about a year and a half and made four records that I know of. Their first was on Morty Craft's Most record label. Then they had three issues on the local Vibro label, the first shown above, was "My Heart." It was released on Vibro, and then as a promo and stock issue for ABC Paramount for a try at national recognition. After making some local noise, they released "Everything That You Said" and one other, but despite the quality, did not sell, or get picked up by ABC like "My Heart" did.
Five Stars - End
Five Stars - Columbia 33
One of several Five Stars groups that were around in the 1950's and 1960's, the song baby baby first came out on the End label in 1958. Somehow and someway, the giant Columbia label released it in 1961, and it was available in a regular 45 and the compact 33 as shown above. It failed to hit national charts either time, but had significant play in a few Markets to the the labels interested.
Hi-Tones - Fonsca
The Shytones and Hi Tones were the same group, hailing from Brooklyn New York.,The record above was first issued on Leo Rogers' Goodspin label. It was a short run of vinyl before it was issued on Fonsca. It seems that Rogers had a deal with Roulette for distribution of the record, and some copies have that listed on the Fonsca label. neither side broke out of the east coast, but they were great songs.
Joe Therrien - Lido
Joe Therrien - Brunswick
Joe Therrien was from Indian Orchard, Massachusetts, and recorded a total of 5 records in his brief career. The biggest seller was the first from 1957. "Hey Babe Let's Go Downtown" flipped with "Come Back To Me Darling." It was a two sider that had play on both sides. His back-up group was the Rockets, and his backing vocals were done by the Ekenbarger sisters from Connecticut, called the Eckos. Originally released on the Lido label, Brunswick picked it up for distribution. Joe's subsequent releases did not sell well, but were great records.
Dart Ward - RIP
Dart Ward - Dot
Dart Ward and the Cut Ups released this record, QT Cute, in 1958, on the RIP label out of Hollywood, California. It appears more than 75 records were issued on RIP, and at one time, the president of the label was Dick Puccio. Major label Dot records saw potential in this uptempo mover, and released it in September of 1958.
Little Willie Littlefield - Rhytyhc
Little Willie Littlefield - Bullseye
A classic from Little Willie Littlefield, on the classic Rhythm record label out of Oakland, California. Owned by Don Barksdale, this label issued some classic west coast Doo Wop and R+B. Ruby Ruby was issued by Rhythm in 1957, and issued by the New York based Bullseye label in early 1958. This had some good play in Pittsburgh, as did many of the Bullseye releases. There was also a third release in 1959, on the Argyle label.
Roy Perkins - Ram
Roy Perkins - Mercury
RAM records was owned by Mira Smith from Shreveport, LA. Most impressive for the time (1955) as a woman starting her own record company. Roy Boogie Boy Perkins was probably her first big find, and his record "Drop Top" made a lot of noise in the gulf area and beyond, early 1958. Enough that Mercury issued it within a month and for some reason dropped the Boogie Boy moniker. Uncredited was the back up band, the Riff Rafts, led by Jimmy Scatman Patin.
Roosters - Shar-dee
Roosters - Felsted
The Roosters had a cool instrumental called "Fun House", originally released on the Shar-Dee label. It had some good play in Pittsburgh, and was then released on the Felsted label for hopeful national exposure. You can see that the record was produced by the famous duo of Lou Adler and Herb Albert. Also of note, on the Felsted release, it shows that it is "A Hit Sound If Played On 33 RPM"! It actually sounds better at that speed!
Spindrifts - Cha Cha Doo - Hot
Spindrifts - Cha Cha Doo - ABC
The Spindrifts were a group from the North Shore area of Boston and had a local hit on the east coast called Cha Cha Doo. Originally released for the Hot record label in 1958, the artist was shown as just the Spindrifts. The group included Freddy Boom Boom Cannon. When issued on ABC, the Downbeats were added to the record label for credit. The record did not sell that well, but was Cannon's first recording. Popular to contrary belief, Cannon did not play guitar with the G Clefs!
Five Playboys - Fee Bee
Five Playboys - Dot
From the Bloomfield section of Pittsburgh, Mickey Sands and the Five Playboys had a local hit with "Pages Of My Scrapbook", released on the legendary Fee Bee label. Originally issued with "Love Me Right" on the flip, it made enough noise to be picked up by Dot. A different flip was slapped on the "B" side called "When We Were Young." Dot often issued records that first appeared on Fee Bee, if they showed promise. Released in 1957.
Five Stars - Kernal
Five Stars - Dot
Dot records also showed interest in this Kentucky based Five Stars group. A really good two sider, I believe both sides actually got some play. I have heard this on TV on a least one news show and is often part of conversations about bombs and similar subjects as well as a few CD packages.
Three Chuckles -Boulevard
Three Chuckles - X
The pop group trio the Three Chuckles made a respectable run on the pop charts with a few records. Their first major hit was called "Runaround." It was first issued on Boulevard records as the "B" side. It was then presumably sold to X records in 1954. Teddy Randazzo was a member of the group and went on to have success as a solo artist and writer.
Silhouettes Junior
Silhouettes Ace
The Silhouettes follow up to Get A Job was called "I Sold My Heart To The Junkman." As was "Get A Job", it was issued on the Philadelphia based Junior label, in 1958. This time, it was picked up by Ace, and issued on their label, also in 1958.
Mints - Night Air Lin
Mints - Night Air Imperial
Out of Texas, the Mints, also known as the Four Mints, recorded for a few labels including Lin. The flip side of this was probably the more popular side, and it was by Ken Copeland and called Pledge Of Love. It sold well, and was issued on the Maroon Imperial label for better distribution. Ken Copeland is Thee Ken Copeland of the ministries of the same name. He recorded a few records for Lin and Imperial.
The Bobbettes were best known for their 1957 recording of Mr. Lee. Three years later, they answered their own disc with I Shot Mr. Lee. Originally recorded for their first label, Atlantic. Problem is that Atlantic didn't release it first. Only after the Bobbettes got a Deal with Triple X, did Atlantic decide to then issue their version. Two different versions were therefore recorded of the song, Triple X has a longer running time.
Dubs - Gone
Dubs - Mark X
The Dubs couldn't release a bad record on the Gone label. Their fourth record from 1958, Be Sure My Love, was no exception. Though Gone had good distribution for them, it was later released on the Mark X label in 1960. Shown is the original black label gone release, and the 2nd press on the Mark X label with the extended title. The original Mark X label had thick and thin lines.
Rusty York - PJ
Rusty York - Chess
When I used to think of the song Sugaree, Hank Ballard and the Midnighters would always come to mind. After hearing Rusty York, I think he has the hottest version of the song, hands down. It was originally released on the P.J. label. The last release was on Chess, released in the same year, 1959. Somewhere in the middle, it was also issued on the Indianapolis based Note record label as well.
Larks - Cross Fire
Larks - Guyden
Here is a group called the Larks from the Philadelphia area. It is not the same group that recorded on Apollo. They had one hit on the Billboard charts called It's Unbelievable. They recorded several others including this soul related song, originally for Crossfire records, and then released for the Guyden label.
Possessions - Parkway
Here is a group out of new York called the Possessions. "No More Love" was issued on the local Britton label in 1964. This group included Frank Fox of Vito And The Salutations. Parkway thought enough of the disc to issue it, and it became a local hit on the east coast. Originals also were issued on a blue wax Britton disc. Boots of this record abound on red and black wax. Another identifying feature of the boots are the inclusion of "unc. vrs." on the left side in the middle between the lines.
Turks - Cash
Turks - Knight
When you think of the Turks, you may think of the song Emily. They recorded several others that were every bit as good, and had several releases with Los Angeles based record companies. The group had some familiar Los Angeles area singers like Gaynel Hodge, Carl Green and Jesse Belvin. I'm A Fool was written by Gaynel Hodge and was first put out on John Dolphin's Money label. It was reissued on Knight records, which recorded a few groups of it's own including the Robins, Majestics and Popsicles. Originally released on Cash in 1956.
Gene Summers - Charay
Gene Summers - Mercury
Gene Summers had a huge bunch of records that were made between 1958 and at least 1977. Starting with songs like The School Of Rock And Roll on the Jan label, he recorded on no less than 15 different labels, including a pair on Charay out of Fort Worth Texas. The one above sparked the interest of Mercury records who then distributed it. Summers made a few local charts with his songs, but never broke out nationally.
Medallions - Dootone
Medallions - Dooto
A Los Angeles favorite, Buick 59 was issued by Dootsie Williams' Dootone records in 1954. That's five years before the slated Buick was to roll out the doors. The thought was to make it a hit in 1954, and turn around and do it again in 1959. That they did. In this case, the second label belonged to Dootsie. He had to change the name because of a threatening lawsuit over the name "Dootone" by a company that specialized in phonograph needles called "Duotone." Speculation and hindsight says he could have won the case, but being an independent operator, the funds were not there to go to court. It was much less costly to design a new label and move on. Most of his original product on Dootone was later seen on Dooto.
Velvets - Red Robin
Velvets - Pilgrim
Here is a classic R+B group with a classic song called "I." It was originally issued on Bobby Robinson's Red Robin records in 1953. It sold well on the R+B charts, and was later reissued on the original purple label of Pilgrim records in 1956. That was about the same time that the Boston area group called the G-Clefs had their first record released on Pilgrim called Ka Ding Dong and hit the charts with it.
Bobby Jackson - Gold Air
Bobby Jackson - Brunswick
Bobby Jackson had a regional hit with "Wow Man Wow." It was part rock and roll record and part novelty, with a female answering him. It was associated with Nor Va Jak music and was originally on the Gold Air label from Amarillo, Texas. Brunswick was the major label that distributed it nationally.
Johnny Flamingo - Caddy
Johnny Flamingo - Aladdin
Johnny Flamingo was one of those guys that made a bunch of records in his 7 or 8 years of prolific recording, and he had some amazing stuff. This one was originally issued on Huggy Boy's Caddy label. The Late Dick Hugg named it after a Cadillac - something he wanted to buy with his proceeds from the label. It had a non Johnny Flamingo tune on the flip. The Aladdin record came later in the same year, 1957.
Contrails - Reuben
Contrails - Diamond
The Contrails. They were Dick And Jack. That would be Richard Engel and John Antonio "Jack" Stanizzo, and they were a Pittsburgh duet. This is an instrumental side, the flip has vocals. Reuben was the first label, and the more popular Diamond label, picked it up for distribution. Diamond had a good stable of artists including Ronnie Dove and Johnny Thunder. The McClendon on the label is actually Charles Reuben McClendon. The "B" side is shown.
Billy Stewart - Chess
Billy Stewart - Argo
This appears to be Billy Stewart's first recording for Chess, from June of 1956. About five to six months later, the record was pressed on the Argo label, though neither sold tremendous volumes of discs. Stewart went on to have a bunch of top 100 records on Chess in the 60's with his biggest being a remake of the classic show tune called Summertime. Both of the records above were also released on 78 RPM.
Fugitive - Sims
Fugitive - Arvee
Although it's the B side, I always thought it was interesting to name a song after your group. Freeway is the flip and got the most spins, though only from the local charts. Both labels were based in Hollywood, but the Sims label was first. Richard Vaughn's Arvee label had several hits from the Olympics, later on, the Marathons, and others. The Sims label would later have the Wallace Brothers, Hal Willis, and others in the 60's.
Roller Coasters -Holiday Inn
Roller Coasters - Delfi
So the Holiday Inn had their own record label! Based in Memphis, Tennessee, it was started by the owner of the Holiday Inn chain, Kemmons Wilson, and included Sam Phillips of Sun records for a time. "Wild Twist" is a great instrumental, issued in 1962, first on the Holiday Inn label. Del Fi issued it on their Los Angeles label shortly thereafter.
Kingtones - Kitoco
Kingtones - Derry
These are actually two different recordings of the same song, and are by the Michigan group, the Kingtones. Pete Mervenne was on lead vocals, and as shown the Kitoco issue was released in 1963, Derry discs were from 1964. A fun song from a group that had a couple of songs show up on more than one label.
Colts - Vita
Colts - Sweet Sixteen
I have always enjoyed the colts records, and their follow up to Adorable is no exception. Sweet Sixteen is from 1956 on the Vita label, and I love the picture on the label. The Plaza label is from Hollywood, not to be confused with the Plaza label from New York, and was issued in 1962. The Marathons were another group that recorded for Plaza.
Jim Balcom - Starla
Jim Balcom - Dot
A local Los Angeles hit, on the legendary Starla label owned by the amazing DJ Art Laboe. Handsome Jim Balcom's Corrido Rock was sent to the radio stations in 1958. Dot records got on it the same year and though they were a major label with great distribution, it didn't break out of the west coast like they hoped for. Jim Balcom can also be heard as the band on a few of Little Julian Herrera's releases.
Smokey Joe - Flip
Smokey Joe - Sun
This is an interesting pairing. Smokey Joe (Baugh) and The Signifying Monkey was released on the Sun label in 1955. It was re-released on Flip (Non Union) crediting the Clyde Leoppard Band, while the Sun label did not mention it. Flip used the same catalog and master numbers as the Sun release. Both labels were owned by Sam Phillips, and the Flip label was forced out of business in 1955, since Max Freitag already had the Los Angeles Flip label operating successfully.
Rivileers - Baton
Rivileers - Dark
The late great Gene Pearson along with the Rivileers, had a great record and local hit with the original version of A Thousand Stars. It was released twice on the Baton label. First, as shown in 1954 on issue number 200 with "Hey Chiquita" on the flip. Then again on Baton in 1957 using record number 241 and a different flip called "Who is The Girl." Using the exact number of the second disc, it was issued on Dark, in the late 1950's. These two labels along with Sir, were related and owned by Sal Rabinowitz. Baton actually became Sir in 1957.
Lifeguards - Casa Blanca
Lifeguards - ABC
On Your Mark, Get Set, Now Ready, Ready, Gooooo! Complete with Lifeguard whistles, bells and commands for everybody to get out of the pool, this quasi instrumental was a fun novelty tune from 1959. Though not a Billboard charter, it certainly got the regional action - just enough to have ABC pick it up from the tiny Casa Blanca label. One Frank Pingatore was obviously involved with the production and had the writing credits.
Some of the stations that played this record included WIBG in Philadelphia, KQV in Pittsburgh, KIMN Denver, and WBNY in Buffalo New York. The group on this record was none other than Bill Haley's Comets. Since they were moonlighting, it would have been tough to promote it with all their other commitments. They probably didn't expect it to be a hit. They also happened to moonlight as the Kingsmen for East West for two separate 45's. The record on the right was probably issued around 1965 and the third issue of the record. There is not much information on the label to identify it, but it could have been from the east coast. I have seen people write about a fourth release, possibly on East West, but I don't show that actually ever happened.
Lifeguards - DR
Chuck Alaimo - Ken
Chuck Alaimo - MGM
A hit record in the Rochester New York area, "Leap Frog" by the Chuck Alaimo Quartet was a sax blasting instrumental. First issued on the Ken label, it sold well enough to get MGM interested for their company. The original Ken record label was informative and listed the members of the band, and MGM followed suit. The Ken label also had Blueberry Hill on the flip. When MGM pressed the disc, they used "That's My Desire" for the "B" side. Just five releases later, the Ken label had another local hit and Dot was the lucky label. See below.
Frank Derosa - Ken
Frank Derosa - Dot
Frank DeRosa and the "De" Men had an instrumental recording that was starting to make some noise in upstate New York. After enjoying some success with the Chuck Alaimo Quartet, Ken issued "Big Guitar" which is a hot record. Hot enough for Dot to make a deal this time, though it did not sell as well as they would have hoped. Note that the Ken label showed the group as the DE Men, playing off the name DeRosa. When Dot pressed it, they shortened it to "D" Men and Separated his last name to De Rosa.
Johnny Aragon - Airlok
Johnny Aragon - 20th Century
An artist I don't know a lot about, Johnny Aragon is considered a "teener" when it comes to classifying his music. This is one of at least three records he made, one of which is shown above. The original was on Airlok, and then 20th Century picked it up hoping for a big hit. I place the record from 1960, and Aragon was likely from the east coast.
Quarter-Notes - Bison
Quarter-Notes - Imperial
Here is a group called the Quarter-Notes. They had one top 100 record called Record Hop Blues in 1959. It was a quick trip, as it peaked at number 82 and lasted just one week. Late in 1959, Canadian Sunset/Frantic Flip was issued on the local Buffalo New York label called Bison. Though it never made it on the national charts, it did get good airplay on some regional stations. Enough for Imperial to pick it up and press it on their label.
Richard Barrett - Orchid
Richard Barrett - Gone
You probably recognize Come Softly To Me, as by the Fleetwoods. And you are right. But, if you were in Chicago, you probably heard Barrett's version as it received substantial airplay in the windy city, along with a few other markets. It even appeared on some charts concurrently with the Fleetwoods. The first copies were pressed on the Orchid label, before Gone got involved and had the needed distribution. This does appear to be the same Orchid label that Vince Castro recorded on.
Tri-Lads - Perspective
Tri-Lads - Bullseye
You may remember the original version of Cherry Pie from Marvin and Johnny. Released in 1954, it was actually the flip of Tick Tock, but ended up getting more exposure when it appeared on a million compilation albums, starting in the early 60's. After that one, but before Skip and Flip's top 100 record, the Tri-Lads had their own version come out in late 1957/early 1958. Though little documentation exists, it came out on a small label out of Tulsa Oklahoma called Perspective. Other vocal groups on the label included the Accents and the Vibes. Bullseye picked it up for better distribution, and it did get quite a bit of airplay in many markets.
Johnnie And Joe - I'll Be Spinning J+S
Johnnie And Joe - I'll Be Spinning Chess
From 1956, Johnnie and Joe's initial waxing of "Feel Alright" and "I'll Be Spinning", sold well for the duo, and for Zell Sanders' J+S label. So well in fact, that she had to set up an agreement with Chess to press and distribute the bulk of the discs. The duo would come back with "Over The Mountain" and have a major hit on the charts with it. More Johnnie and Joe HERE!
Tazmen - Taz
Tazmen - ABC
This is an interesting instrumental record originally released in late 1957. Easy Pickin' came out first on the Chicago based Taz label, but actually was titled "Gobo" on the very first waxing. The Tazmen had a total of four issues, three on Taz, and one on ABC, which was the major label. Easy Pickin' seemed to have the most sales and showed the most promise. The only hint of who the group members were, is the credited guitar solo by Joe Rumoro. When ABC pressed it, they spelled the group name as The Tazman! I'm sure there is a story behind this one.
Pixies - AMC

Pixies - Don Dee

From the best I can tell, the Pixies were from the Washington DC area. They had this record called, Cry Like A Baby. It was released initially on the AMC label in 1962, and then it showed up on the Philadelphia based Don Dee moniker after that. Neither label was very big. AMC just had three releases I know of, and Don Dee just about twice that amount. The Pixes are shown as also having one additional release on AMC, but it does not show up in the Don Dee label listing. Also, the Don Dee label can be found on a black label. Further, the Pixies Three were originally slated to use the Pixies name, until they found out about this group on a obligatory name search before they had their first hit recording.
The Velvetones, featuring J.R. Baily, recorded several discs for the Aladdin label. The Glory Of Love, though not a new song, it was certainly a unique interpretation. The talking bridge was quite a bit longer than your normal bridge, and included the line "Fine Fine Super Fine Career." That always stood out for me! It was issued in 1958, on Aladdin, and was then re-issued in 1962 on Imperial 5878 - shown above.

The Velvetones record did sell in certain markets. Shown to the right is the third issue, the second for Imperial, using number 66020 and released in 1964. And the bridge:

I hold in my hand, dear, three letters
Three letters from the stage of your fine, fine, super-fine career
The first began "Eddie, darling, sweetheart, my wonderful one,
I will always be grateful for the things that you've done"
The second letter came right after I gave you your start
Yes, it came from your pen, dear, but not from your heart
The third became the joker of the deck
You ended your letter enclosed "please sign my cheque"
Why you fool! You poor, sad, worthless, foolish fool
If you think that money can pay me
For the hard years I've suffered till things broke your way
Yes, I'm answering your last letter that says we must part
I'm tearing it to pieces the way you tore up my heart
I smile when you kiss me and I thrill at your touch
My only sin was, I love you much too much

Charms - Rockin
Charms - Deluxe
Out of Cincinnati, Ohio, the Charms can be traced back to 1952, and their first recording was in 1953. It was on the Florida based Rockin' label, which was part of the King roster of monikers. The disc started to sell, and King issued on their "new" Deluxe label. So, it was not exactly new, as they had bought the already established label which was originally based in New Jersey. "Heaven Only Knows" was their first record as they started the "new" 6000 series of Deluxe.
Lafayette - Your Pick
Lafayette - Port
Here is an odd one. Lafayette and the LaSabres had a doo wopish, almost country-twangish song called "Cure For Love", backed with an instrumental. The artist is Lafayette Yarbrough, who had at least one other record, maybe more. I have very little information the the Your-Pick label, and am still confirming it was a first label. It is possible there were several issues earlier on Your-Pick which is based on the record number of 1005. It does not appear to be a reissue label, and a few different books confirm it as a first label. Port had some original recordings but quite a few artists/songs that had been on other labels.
Gallahads - Beechwood
Gallahads - Starla
Here are the Gallahads. OK, one of the Gallahads groups. The Jimmy Pipkin Gallahads group was not in Los Angeles at the time, and due to circumstances that would at least be a chapter in a book, another group was drafted to be the Gallahads. They were the Chants out of San Pedro. They recorded just two records as the Gallahads, and this one was first issued on the Beech Wood label. Sad Girl was the "A" side, and it was quickly picked up by Los Angeles DJ Art Laboe for his Starla label. The Pipkin led Gallahads then got on the charts with I'm Without A Girlfriend, for the Donna/Delfi labels, after the "Other" Gallahads record was through.
Luther Bond - Showboat
Luther Bond - Todd
Luther Bond and the Emeralds recorded some great group harmony in their time. The group was from the Cincinnati Ohio area. They actually recorded two records on the showboat label, "Gold Will Never Do" was the first of them. Sadly, it was nearly the end of their releases as a group. Somehow, the group was introduced to Ray Scriveners Nashville, TN label called Showboat. It could have been through Ohio based record company owner John Finch. Interestingly enough, the Briar International label was also based in Tennessee, and it was owned by Paul Cohen. My belief is that the Showboat label came first. On the flip of the Briar label is "Should I Love You" which was recorded in the studio in early 1960. It is believed that Gold Will Never Do on Showboat was released in 1959 and it included Jitterbug Jamboree as the flip. There are not many references to the Briar International label, except a few bluegrass issues.
Roy Tan - Tan
Roy Tan - Dot
Though not a huge hit by any means, this record had some good play in some regions. Who was Roy Tan? I am unable to find any definitive information on that. Why the name, and was it real? Maybe. But could it be associated or have been influenced by the Roi Tan cigars? What seems most reasonable is that he made the record, he was unable to get a record company to release it, so he created his own label, Tan records. It started to sell (what regions?) and Dot decided to distribute it nationally. Isabella is a great uptempo record. Written by Johnnie Getz who also co-wrote Wobble Lou with, and for Ray Agee. Also note that Isabella is listed as the "B" side for the Tan release.
Little Jimmy And The Tops - Vtone2
Little Jimmy And The Tops -  Len Yellow
Out of Philadelphia, Buddy Caldwell's V-tone records issued Little Jimmy Rivers and the Tops' "Puppy Love" in winter of 1959. The original V-Tone first press listed just the "Tops", with no Jimmy Rivers. The above 2nd Vtone press credits Little Jimmy with the Tops, and this can probably also be found with Philadelphia listed under the V-Tone banner. The song actually garnered a lot of airplay on the east coast, and was soon issued on Caldwell's Len label, likely early 1961. .
Little Jimmy And The Tops -  Len Orange
Little Jimmy And The Tops -  Len Swan
Continuing on with Little Jimmy Rivers And The Tops, the first Len issue was on the yellow label previously, and then was pressed with the orange label shown above. In 1961, Swan issued the record to distribute it outside the east coast, also shown above. A great record that should have sold more copies.
Silvatones - Monarch
Silvatones - argo
Here are the Silva-tones featuring Bob Silva. It landed briefly on the Billboard charts for just two weeks, with a peak position of #86. It appeared in December 1957, and was released nationally on Argo, first with the ship label as above, and then with the black label with Argo down the left side. On that issue, you will find the slight title change of "Chi Wa Wa (That's All I Want From You)." Originally released on the Monarch 615 as Bob Silva and the Silva Tones with "Weepin And Awailin" on the flip, it seems it was also issued after the success on the Argo label, by Monarch. Interestingly enough Monarch shows the same record number of 5281 from Argo, which I believe was the last Argo "ship" label.
Linda Brannon - RAM
Linda Brannon - Chess
Linda Brannon made some noise with this record "Just Another Lie." It was a territorial best seller in the gulf area, and started selling. Ram was a small label out of Shreveport, LA, and at the time of this release had a distribution deal with Ace, to help get records out to the public. Chess picked it up, but it never did become a big hit. James Burton happened to be part of Linda Brannon's group, and there are cool pictures showing him playing beside her, possibly at the Louisiana Hayride.
3 Stooges - Spinett
3 Stooges - Epic
I can't say I am an expert on this record, but it is not Larry, Moe And Curly! The original was on Spinett, and then picked up by Epic. My Epic promo copy has the group name crossed out and then stamped underneath. This record appears to include Doctor John. Released in 1960.
Charles Christy - Cherry
Charles Christy - HBR
I love the song "Cherry Pie." I didn't think I would enjoy a 1965 version of it, until I heard this one. The original was on the small Cherry label, likely owned by Charles Christy. It was picked up by HBR, but missed the Billboard charts. It did not miss the charts on KACY Oxnard, KOMA Oklahoma City, or KFJZ In Fort Worth Texas.
4 Imprials - Lorelei
4 Imprials - Dot
The Four Imperials were responsible for several records, including a Christmas favorite "Santa's Got A Coupe De Ville." In this instance, "Lazy Bonnie" was issued on the Detroit based Lorelei records, before being leased to Dot Records. The Dot issue credits the Hank Luke Quintet.
Danderliers - States
Danderliers - B+F
A classic group record from the States record label out of Chicago. "Chop Chop Boom" rose to number ten on the R+B charts for States in 1955. Also shown is the second label B+F records, also out of Chicago and having the same owners as States, and also a label that seems to have reissued a lot of their own material.
Egyptian Combo - Huff
Egyptian Combo -Norman
The Egyptian combo was a group from Southern Illinois whose biggest hit was "Gale Winds" in 1964. This Huff single predated it, and was released in 1963. Based on my research, the Norman release was from 1965, after the "Gale Winds" issue. The group cut quite a few records and still are playing today.
Frank And Jack - Bergen
Frank And Jack - Josie
This was a Holiday record by Frank And Jack that used sound effects and celebrity voices. Released in fall of 1957, the first issue was on Bergen from the town of Little Ferry, NJ, and then on to Josie for a bit better distribution. Bergen was associated with the Eddie's label. "Twas The Night Before Christmas (Breaking The Sound Barrier) was a goofy record, and does not show up on too many playlists any more.
Harold Dorman - Rita
Harold Dorman - Top Rank
Harold Dorman was best know for his big hit "Mountain Of Love." This was a subsequent issue called "Moved To Kansas City." I can hear a little of "Mountain Of Love" in the record, but no relation and not an answer to the Wilbert Harrison song called "Kansas City." Issued in 1960.
Connie And Lee - Look
Connie And Lee -Gone
I don't know a lot about Connie and Lee, but I do know they appeared on American Bandstand, July 3rd, 1958. Frankie Sardo was also a guest on that weeks show. Perhaps that is how a record issued on the small Look label ended up with a major player in the day, Gone records. Exposure on American Bandstand could do wonders for your career. In this particular case, the record had minor sales, but enough to be issued on the Canadian Reo label.
Rickie Page - Coin
Ricky Page - Dot
Sometimes a text change got you a name change. Rickie vs. Ricky in this case. Shown in a September 1961 Dot records ad in Billboard, the record was an answer to the G-Clefs record. The flip, "Every Time You're Mine" had some action in Hong Kong. She had a great sound and this was just of several records she recorded, including at least one other answer record.
Gee Sisters - Palette
Gee Sisters - Hickory
The great girl group sounds of the Gee Sisters. The record was first issued on Palette around August of 1962, then a record deal was struck with Hickory a couple months later. Notice the title has changed a little from Palette to Hickory. "Telstar (Help Me)" to "(Help Me) Telstar." This disc was also released in Australia on their Festival label. The Gee sisters were Barbara and Annette Gross from Forest Hills, NY.
Ward Darby - Petite
Ward Darby - Dot
This is an interesting record. Ward Darby and the raves is the artist. Also known as Willie Ward, he recorded several records, and a few of them fro Pittsburgh labels. He originally was singing country, but got away from that on this release. On the Petite release (subsidiary of Fee Bee) there is a notation of a vocal chant by the Tribesmen, which is omitted on the Dot issue. Also interesting is on one version of the Petite issue, there really is a vocal chant, and then it goes into the funky intro, and the other version starts at the intro, however, both labels credit the vocal chant. Dot picked it up since it actually started selling well in certain regions.
Dore Alpert - Carnival
Dore Alpert - Dot
Dore Alpert is actually Herb Alpert in an earlier career for him. "Fallout Shelter" is about a lovesick teen locking himself into a fallout shelter to escape reality and his former girlfriend. First issued on Carnival, and best I can tell it continued to be pressed in California on that label, but Dot distributed it outside California. Alpert shares half the writing credits. This side was included on a CD compilation called Atomic Platters.
From Alabama, the Webs had a funny song called "Lost (Cricket In My Ear)." OK, so more of an instrumental with character voices breaking in and complete with some sound effects. They even have a reference to the hit "Foot Stompin." Part of the group (Frog Voice) and garnering half the writers credits was Bobby Goldsboro. Heart records put it out first, then the Lite label issued it with some distribution from Seg-way. Issued in 1962.
Dottie Fergerson - Kernal
Dottie Fergerson - Mercury
Dottie Fergerson appears to have had a short recording career. On the Kentucky based Kernal records, she was backed by the Five Stars on "Slow Burn." It must have started selling in a couple of regions, as Mercury picked it up, and they were a huge record company at that time. Oddly enough, Mercury dropped any mention of the Five Stars and gave all the attention to Dottie Fergerson. This was issued in 1957.
Barry/Highlights - Baye
Barry/Highlights - Airmaster
Another Christmas song, this time featuring Barry And The Highlights. "Xmas Bell Rock" is one I have featured many times on my radio show, first saw the light of day on the Baye label from Baltimore, Maryland. There was just a handful of releases on Baye, and they must have concocted a deal with Airmaster out of Philadelphia, to try and sell a few more discs. Perhaps it was making noise in Philly and they decided to get some local distribution, as Airmaster was very small, too. 1960.
G Notes - Tender
G Notes -Jackpot
The G notes were a fairly typical girl group, though they sounded very young. The reason for that is because they were. Aged nine and eleven, Nancy and Linda Giampapa were the G Notes. It was the very first release for the then new Jackpot label out of Hollywood. But, Jackpot acquired the sides from Tender records, another small label from Hollywood, that also had the first issue of the Shields record, "You Cheated." "Ronnie" was the slow side, the flip, "Johnny Johnny Johnny" was very uptempo with a great organ throughout. Released in 1958
Monarchs - Jam
Monarchs - Sound Stage 7
Cruising over to Kentucky, the Monarchs were a group that were very popular in the Louisville area. Their first record was from 1962, and this was their second disc. Released in January 1963, it hit the local charts on the Jam label, as well as others in Detroit, Arizona, and Springfield, MA. Sound Stage Seven picked it up, and the Monarchs were then regionally known for their talent and great music.
Peachettes - Hawk
Peachettes - Clock
First released on the Hawk label in 1960, Lin Taylor and the Peachettes did the standard "The Bells Of St. Mary's." This Hawk label was from New York, and shows as the first record for the company. The record was then issued on Clock records, later in 1960, and the name change from Lin to Lynn Taylor was made. Clock records had Dave Baby Cortez on their roster, so they had some experience with success. Australia's Pye label jumped on this one, too. Flip was "Sweet Little Girl" which was a nice mid-tempo record, with a real groove.
Peachettes Black Hawk Bells
Peachettes Black Hawk 1000 Stars
Label number three was Black Hawk, from Jamaica New York. Issued in 1965, five years after the initial Hawk release, the promo copy is shown above. I suspect the labels were related, and for this issue, they pressed a different flip. The Rivileers standard of "A Thousand Stars" was the "B" side, and it sounds like just the Peachettes singing. If Lynn Taylor is on the record, I can't hear him.
Sonics - Nocturne
Sonics - RKO
The Sonics were from New Jersey, and had some great doo wop sides. "Triangle Love" is more of an uptempo rock and roll song. This is a tough pairing to figure out. One possible scenario is that it was released on RKO Unique in 1957, and then issued again in 1959 on Nocturne. I have seen a Nocturne 78, which would put it late in the game at 1959, but it shows distribution by RKO. Nocturne was the smaller label, based out of New Rochelle, NY.
Raging Sorms - Warwick
Raging Sorms - Atlas
A great instrumental, "The Dribble Twist" by the Raging Storms, who were from Detroit. Since Warwick became Trans Atlas, the Warwick release was likely first. It was released in very late 1961, and both issues could have almost been simultaneous in nature. These labels were owned by Morty Craft.
Beti Webb - XL
Beti Webb - MGM
When I think of the Memphis based XL label, I think Of Sam The Sham and the first issue of Wooley Bully. This is Beti Webb with a first issue on XL called "I Know (You Can Be Happy)." Released in 1966, MGM saw the potential and distributed it with a different flipside. Whenever that happens, it usually means they needed a weaker B side so the DJ's didn't flip the record.
Ray Johnson - Goad
Ray Johnson - Imperial
Ray Johnson made some amazing records, especially earlier in his career. Both sides of this one were written by him. This happens to be a single artist vocal. The original was on the Goad label out of Los Angeles, and my discography shows four releases for Goad, all by Ray Johnson. It has a great beat, Imperial records agreed, and they picked it up for distribution.
Clyde Stacy - G+H
Clyde Stacy - Bullseye
With a song written and originally recorded by Little Willie Littlefield, Clyde Stacy recorded "Baby Shame" for the Chicago based G&H records. They say it had more action in Canada then in the states, and was one of several follow up records to his first recording "So Young." "Baby Shame"was then issued on Woody Hinderling's Bullseye label, to try and get some additional action. Bullseye was based in New York, but when you look at the discography, you find a lot of Pittsburgh area artists were used. Clyde Stacy had his roots in Texas and Oklahoma.
Admiral Tones - Future
Admiral Tones - Felsted
I happen to prefer the flip side , shown, on this record by the Admiral Tones called Rocksville USA." Originally issued on the Philadelphia based Future records, it was given three stars in Billboard magazine on their March 30th, 1959 edition. But, by the time Billboard reviewed it, the disc had already made the change to Felsted and was on it's way to regional success. Future records was also home to the Philharmonics, the Del Rays, The Furness Brothers, and even Vic Fontaine with a group. Oh, and the flip on this record? It's "Hey Hey Pretty Baby."
Accents - Commerce
Accents - Challenge
There are a ton of records by groups that call themselves the Accents. This is technically Sandi (Rouse) and the Accents. Commerce was the first label for this song. They had about a dozen releases and were from the Los Angeles area. This group appears to be from San Diego, and this is a great ballad. Challenge must have either bought or leased it from Commerce, and credit is given to Commerce on the Challenge label.
Rollee McGill - Piney
Rollee McGill - Mercury
Rollee McGill and the Rhythm Rockers had a record on Piney records, owned by Herman "Piney" Gillespie. It was based in Philadelphia, and they probably cut the disc at the Reco-Art studios on Market St. in Philadelphia. McGill was the sax player, and he went on to play sax on the silhouettes "Get A Job." The record started making noise, not only in Philly, but also Chicago, New York and Los Angeles. Mercury hopped aboard that train and started distributing the record, and quickly put a big ad in Billboard, in the March 26th, 1955 edition.
Billy Bland - Old Town
Billy Bland - Tip Top
From Wilmington, North Carolina, Billy Bland sold a lot of records in his day. "Let The Little Girl Dance" was his biggest hit, but he started off his recording career on Old Town in 1956 with "Chicken In The Basket." It had regional success, and Old Town started pumping records out from Billy Bland. An odd release from Tip Top in 1958, constitutes my second label on this pairing. Tip Top does give label credit to Old Town by way of the required publishing.
Julie Stevens - Dig
Julie Stevens - Eldo
A Classic Los Angeles record from Johnny Otis' Dig label. Julie Stevens along with the Dig vocal group, the Premiers, scored a local hit with "Blue Mood." The record was issued - and in this case partied to death - in 1956. The Eldo release is four years later in 1960. Eldo had the Safaris (Image Of A Girl) on their label, as well as the Ding Dongs, Ron Holden, and even a cut by the Penguins. The Eldo label was owned by Johnny Otis.
Lenny Young - Jay Scott
Lenny Young - Jackpot
I first found this record while compiling my Jackpot label discography. Once I looked at this record really hard, I realized it was first issued on the Jay Scott Label. Lenny Young And The Jay Birds recorded this doo wopish record in 1958. It turned out to be another acquisition for Jackpot, as they picked it up for distribution. Now I never thought Jackpot had amazing distribution capabilities themselves, but they certainly had more money behind them in case they had a huge hit.
Doc Bagby - Red Top
Doc Bagby - Hunt
This is an instrumental featuring Doc Bagby and his organ. Doc Bagby was the composer of "Rock The Joint" and a huge in demand session man. And, he made a lot of records with his name on them. "Muscle Tough" sounds like a Traditional Jewish Wedding song, but I could be way off on that. Taking a page from the Quin-Tones discography, the original was on Red Top and then the bigger label, Hunt, got a hold of it for distribution.
Trirones - Grand
Trirones - Jamie
Originally released on the Philadelphia based Grand label, "Blues In The Closet" was a great instrumental featuring a variety if instruments including a flute and organ. It's a very cool instrumental and obviously made some local noise. Staying in Philly, Jamie was selected to distribute it. They had a lot of good selling records and were in a better position to handle the disc if it broke out big.
Terry Noland - Brunswick
Terry Noland - Coral
"There Was A Fungus Among Us", static in the attic, and a whole host of other things. Certainly a catch phrase in some locales in the 1950's, this was the original version of the song, written by the artist, Terry Noland. Released on Brunswick first in 1959, and then again in 1961 on Coral, a subsidiary of Decca. The reason it was re-released had to be because Hugh Barrett and the Victors made their recording of the song in 1961, so Coral was trying to get some additional action from the record. This was Terry Noland's sixth single, and he also issued an LP comprising many of his singles.
Tren-dells - Jam
Tren-dells - Capitol
Jam records from Kentucky formed in 1962, and with that, issued their first record shown above. The Tren-Dells "Nite Owl" was not the Tony Allen song, but totally different and completely uptempo. Jam released about 15 records, and most stayed local. The previously shown Monarchs record on this page and this one, both made real attempts to break out. It didn't get too much bigger than Capitol records for the Tren-Dells second label, and they must have really seen the potential in this one.
Delores Gibson - Ultrasonic
Delores Gibson is a tough lady to come up with accurate info on. It appears two records on King belong to her, and then there are these two. Ultrasonic should be the first issue, and it is available on gold vinyl. The second label, Elloma, shows being distributed by Warner Brothers, so would seem to be a second label for the record. "I Got A Feeling" is a good record. I have seen a date listed as 1960, so that may be correct.
Lugee Lions - Robbee
Lou Christie - World
Three different labels, two different artists shown, same song. And actually, the same artist. Lugee And The Lions was fronted by Lou Christie, and was on the Pittsburgh based Robbee records. There were a bunch of good records on the label, and this was one of them - a local hit in Pittsburgh for sure. Then it was issued again on the World label, also from Pittsburgh. This time it just credits Lou Christie, and it removes the very first part of the record with the gavel dropping down in several strokes.
Lou Christie Jury AMM
Lou Christie Little Did I Know AMM
The third label you can find this recording on is American Music Makers. It was released in 1967, and used the same shortened intro without the gavel dropping. The address is slightly changed from the World release, but all three labels are from Pittsburgh. AMM released fifteen or so records starting in 1966, though none appeared to be hits. The label ran an add in the November 1965 issue of Billboard looking for talent with the bold headline of "Attention United Kingdom And United States Producers." Shown above are both sides of the AMM label release.
Pre Historice - Edsel
Pre Historice - Del Fi
Edsel records was from Hollywood California, and had the first issue of the Pre-Historics vocal version of "Oh Blues." Released in 1960, Edsel may not have been a bad name for a label. At the time anyway. The two labels listed were actually related and had Bob Keene involvement. Based on the record number, the Delfi record was issued in 1961, making it the second label.
Doc Starkes Nightriders  Night Ridin Sound
Doc Starkes Nightriders  Night Ridin Capitol
Doc Starks and the Night Riders were a great group that formed in 1954. You could find all different kinds of spelling on their name, but one thing for sure, they had a great sound. And they were already seasoned professionals when they started out. They had some great regional play on a song called "Apple Cider", but on this one "Night Ridin", they had interest from Capitol records, a huge name in music at that time. It was a great instrumental recorded first for the Philadelphia based Sound records, before the involvement with Capitol. This was released in 1955.
Strikes - Baby I'm Sorry Lin
Strikes - Baby I'm Sorry Imperial
"Baby I'm Sorry" backed with "If You Can't Rock Me" was a nice two sider for the Strikes. Recording first on the Gainesville, Texas Lin label, it was picked up by Imperial records for national distribution. The Strikes we friends at North Texas State University, with Willie Jacobs on lead vocals. You can see that the Lin label credits the Three Pelves, and Imperial decided it was nit necessary. Release late 1956/earl 1957. Both songs were later covered by Ricky Nelson.
Bruce Johnston-Donna
Bruce Johnston-Ronda
The Bruce Johnston disc above was first released as the Surf Stompers as the artist, then as above, and again as "The Original Surfer Stomp" as the title. This is more about the labels, and Donna was the original label for the record. I know very little about Ronda records. I do know they issued another Los Angeles area record by the Candlettes, and it may have been the same group from Vita records, though there are two different spellings of the groups name. The Ronda label references the Donna master (DF-1261-414), so must be a vintage second label. Makes sense that it would have been issued after the Surf Stompers issue and before the "Original Surfer Stomp" issue.
Raiders - Van
Raiders - VJ
Released in late 1962 on Van records, "(It's A) Stick Shift" was not the same instrumental as the Duals record of "Stick Shift." It was however the first recording for the Raiders on Charles Van Meter and Lonny Roberts Van label from Texas. There were three additional 45's released on Van plus an EP, and interestingly, the label released several other records including a few by the owners of the label. Vee Jay saw potential in the disc and issued it in early 1963, and left off "It's A" from the title.
Robin Robinson-Antler
Robin Robinson-Atlantic
In 1956, Robin Robinson recorded "I Promise You" on Buck Ram's Antler records. Pressed on 45, shown above, it could also be found on a 78. It was a pop ballad, also written by Buck Ram. The disc made enough noise that in April of 1957, Atlantic purchased it from Buck Ram and released it. Robinson had just one other record that I can find, "More Than Everything" recorded for Poplar records in 1958.
Sam Lazar Trio - Cawthron
Sam Lazar Trio -Argo
The Sam Lazar Trio was from the St. Louis area, where Cawthron records was based. If you have heard the record, it is Sam Lazar himself on the organ. It's a really hot jazz instrumental, that made some noise in several regions. Shown above is the second of at least three issues, the first did not have the mention of Bingo distributing. The release on Cawthron originally would have been released in 1959, and the above copy, probably 1960. It had parts one and two of "Space Flight" on it. The Argo issue just had part one, and was not labeled as such, and had a different flip. The Cawthron disc can be found on blue and regular black wax.
Gary Paxton, besides a talented singer, arranger of groups, and writer, also produced and had this short lived label called Paxley. Besides his group the Hollywood Argyles, you could also find the Fascinations, Joe Lover And Johnny Stallings on Paxton. There must have been just enough interest in the song for them to make a deal with Gardena records, owned by Johnny Guss. The Gardena label was riding high with Paul Revere and the Raiders "Like Long Hair", and in fact, Johnny Angel's "Baby,You've Got Soul" was the next numbered record in line. If you were listening to KWYK in New Mexico, they had both sides on their February charts. They must have been an early adopter, as they listed it on Paxton.
From Los Angeles, the Turks were a great sounding group with a lot of history. They recorded several records, and backed up a bunch of other artists including Wynona Carr, Eugene Church, and Johnny Guitar Watson. "I'm A Fool" was recorded for John Dolphin's Money label. He also had Recorded in Hollywood, and Cash - which the Turks would also record on. This one was rated good by the trades, and was issued in early 1956. The exact same recording showed up in 1958 on the Knight label, which was a subsidiary of Imperial records, who purchased it. It was also released in 1959 on Imperial.
The legendary Dale Hawkins from Goldmine LA. He had a great song called Class Cutter, with later versions adding the Yeah Yeah in the title - see my first and second titles page for this example. On "Class Cutter", some copies were mistakenly pressed on Chess. It had the same Checker number, which was considerably different than the current Chess numbers at the time. I had always thought the Chess issue was a boot, but I don't think so. Both the Chess and Checker issues have the 45-9225 etched in the dead wax, along with the Sheldon stamp. The Checker 45's additionally have the delta date code.
When you think of first and second pressings for Robin Luke, your first thought might be "Susie Darlin"from 1958. Your second thought should be "Chicka Chicka Honey", the follow-up recording, also from 1958. Dot leased it from Bertram International, as they did on a couple of additional follow up records by Robin Luke. This one had play in Hawaii, the west coast and even Ottawa Canada, on CFRA. The Jolly Drifters, AKA the Royal Drifters, had backing credit on this disc.
Eddie Robbins - A Girl Like You Power
Eddie Robbins - Dot
Power records didn't issue that many records, but what discs they did cut, were good ones. Most notably was the original "Short Shorts" which can be seen on my companion page of first and second labels - the hits. Eddie Robbins didn't do much recording, but the records he did make were great quality. "A Girl Like You" is a nice mid tempo kiddie lead from late 1957, with a nice group backing. Once it started making enough local noise, Dot records got interested enough to issue it in early 1958. The flip "Dear Parents" is a fine ballad.
Exceptions - Down By The Ocean Pro
Exceptions - Down By The Ocean Cameo
Jimmy Ellis and the Exceptions started out as the Cordells on the Bargain label with "Every Beat Of My Heart." They then recorded as the Whirlwinds, before renaming themselves again and calling themselves the Exceptions. "Down By The Ocean" was a big Philadelphia hit, released on Pro Records locally, before being picked up and distributed by another Philadelphia label, Cameo. It's a great group record with a lot going on for all 2:05.
Jackie Carbone - Sugar Eyes Fox
Jackie Carbone - Sugar Eyes Ciro's
When I think of Jackie Carbone, I automatically place his music in Detroit. "Sugar Eyes" was just one of his records, another favorite is "Jam Up" on the Star X label. The initial issue of "Sugar Eyes" was in June 1958 on Fox, a label owned by George Braxton, and had some great recordings. I am fairly confident the Ciro's release is the second issue, but unsure of the date. It would have to be between June 1958 and May of 1959.
Jackie Carbone Sugar Eyes
Jackie Carbone My Spanish Dancing Doll
The May 1959 date is when another release of "Sugar Eyes" was released on MGM (12801). I have seen pictures of the MGM disc, and it references Ciro's publishing, which leads me to the previous conclusion. What is unknown for sure is if the MGM disc has the same take as Fox and Ciro's.
Humdingers - Jaye Joseph
Humdingers - Donna
There were several groups called the Humdingers, including the Teen Queens on MJC, the group on Dale records, and this one pictured above. The Humdingers on this release were lead by Larry Bright of "Mojo Workout" fame,who also has the writing credits. The track is the same one titled "Street Machine" that was issued on the sister label to Donna, Delfi, on the Hollywood Drag LP by the Darts. No credit or mention of Larry Bright appears on the LP. The Jaye Joseph label was the first issue of the record above, and after making a little noise - including the intro to certain features on the radio like the news, it was pressed on Donna with limited success. The record was issued in 1963.
Earl Knight And George Kelly - Winley
Earl Knight And George Kelly - ABC
Whenever I see the Winley label, I always think of those great doo wop groups like the Jesters, Paragons and Collegians. Sometime just before the summer of 1959, Earl Knight and George Kelly teamed up for an instrumental with lots of shouting in the background. You can hear several pieces of other songs if you listen carefully. It's like they took some great instrumentals and "borrowed" from them. Winley from New York issued "Let The Good Times Roll Part One/Two" first, then ABC Paramount saw potential and pressed it. The first Billboard Ad I saw was from June of 1959 with ABC promoting it alongside the Lifeguards "Everybody Outta The Pool" which they had just recently picked up from the Casa Blanca label. The ad also mentioned it was available on Sparton of Canada.
Ron-dells - Le Cam
Ron-dells - Shalimar
The Ron-Dels were a group from Fort Worth Texas, and featured Delbert McClinton and Ron Kelly on lead vocals. Billboard Listed it as hot in Fort Worth in January of 1963, then in February, had it hot in Houston, along with big ads for the disc on the Shalimar label. I show it released on Major Bill Smiths' Le Cam label first and then on Shalimar, which was distributed by the Arlen label out of Philadelphia. I also see a 1969 re-release on Dot, as well as a release on Billie Fran. Billie Fran was also a Major Bill label, and I would date it as either 1965 or 1966.
Shields Dot
Shields Tender
From Los Angeles, the Shields had their biggest hit with "You Cheated." It was on the Billboard top 100 and competed with the original version by the Slades on the Domino label. Their follow-up was "I'm Sorry Now" (1959) and then they waxed "Play The Game Fair" from April 1959. It appears to have been released simultaneously on Tender and Dot, likely the Tender issues stayed on the west coast and Dot issues elsewhere. To make it a little more confusing, Billboard mentions it on Dot in May, and then reviews it on Tender in June. Also of note, the Tender issue has the Dot matrix numbers and uses the date at the bottom of the label, the same way Dot always did.
Bill Stubblefield - Lin
Bill Stubblefield - Imperial
One of the record labels that Imperial was constantly looking at was the Lin/Kliff outfit from Gainesville Texas. They found a couple records by the Strikes, one from the Mints/Ken Copeland, and this one from Bill Stubblefield. The April 1957 issue of Billboard magazine mentions one of the strikes records and the Bill Stubblefield disc above, for the Imperial label and had a huge promotional ad. "Blue Indian Summer" was not a big hit. It featured whistling throughout the record, and was the first of two for Imperial records in 1957. The second was "Whistlin' Rock 'N' Roll", which was not issued on Lin.
Stereos - Hyde
Stereos - Cadet
If you go back to 1955 in Steubenville Ohio, you would find the very beginning of the Stereos. You just have to be patient! They were originally called the Montereys until they found out there was another group with the name. They changed to the Hi-Fi's, and appeared locally and on their local TV station WSTV. Slow forward to early 1957, and they changed their name again, this time to the Buckeyes. At least that's what their new label decided to do - Deluxe records. After releasing two discs with no success, they needed another label. They found Gibraltar and recorded "Sweet Pea's In Love." They had a hit On Cub records "I Really Love You" and several others that did not chart. By 1967, the group had gone through numerous changes, and recorded the mostly instrumental "Stereo Freeze" parts one and two. The original was on Jerry Hyde's Hyde label from Wintersville Ohio. Chess records acquired rights to the recording and issued it on their subsidiary, Cadet, also in 1967.
Monarchs - Pretty Little Girl Neil
The Monarchs had a regional seller in 1956 called "Pretty Little Girl." It had exceptional play in the Boston area, and was a great uptempo recording. Neil records and the Monarchs were from New York. The label issued seven recordings and two from the Monarchs (Always Be Faithful was the other). Melba, which was one of Morty Craft's labels, also released it in 1956, making it a second label. You can see the reference to Neil records, on the Melba label. I have no evidence showing Melba pressed the second Monarch's disc.
Intervals - Side Street Ad
Intervals - Side Street Apt
The Intervals recorded "Side Street" in 1958, and it was first reviewed i the October 2th edition of Billboard magazine, as a "Spotlight Winner Of The Week." "A Blusey Ballad sung with lots of heart by the group" is how Billboard described the new disc. The review was for the Apt label from New York, and the song had some regional airplay, especially at KOL in Seattle. It peaked at number ten on their survey on November 20th 1958. It was also hitbound sound on WIBG in Philadelphia. The first label was the purple Ad label with addresses in Hollywood and New York.
Johnny Mann - Donnie
Johnny Mann Tornados - Breaker Of Dreams Swan
Johnny Mann and the Tornados had a blip on the charts and radios in 1958. "Breaker Of Dreams" originally was issued on the Donnie label and was a nice ballad. The flip, Chick A Lou, was a cool uptempo side. I don't see any reviews for the record from Billboard, but I did notice some spins on Boston radio station WHIL. Perhaps there were additional spins in the Philadelphia area, or East Coast, as Swan picked it up and was the second label for the song.
Magnificent Four - White Whale
Magnificent Four - Blast
Shown as a breakout record in New York, "The Closer You Are" by the Magnificent Four was a totally different take on the song the Channels recorded in 1956. This uptempo version from 1961, complete with bass line hooks, didn't have time for an instrumental break in the middle. Just great doo wop with a lot going on. The New York based Whale was the first issue for the record and was shown first in the Billboard October 1961 issue. WABC gave it a ton of spins in New York, for a bonified local hit. Blast issued it again in 1963, coming off a local hit with the Excellents "Coney Island Baby."
A classic record from New Jersey, the Plurals singing "Miss Annie" is a just a great record. The Wanger release above is one of three or four different pressings and is a little later in that line. Early issues had Tino music shown. The 2nd label was Bergen, which was very similar in design and color
Alcar records, from Cincinnati OH, had a much bigger discography than Pelpal, and included notable artists like Lou Christie and Dale Wright. It was the first press on the disc and released around 1959, though neither sold much. Also from Cincinnati, OH, the Pelpal label had less than a dozen releases. This was the first one, and was from 1964. Ron Neat along with the Janet Shaw trio, recorded "Ronnie." Though I have other recordings by Janet Shay, I have none others by Ron Neat.
Otis Shooters- She's Alright
Otis Shooters- She's Alright Finer Arts
"She's Alright" was originally released by the Shooters on Trans-World in 1960. Looking at the label closely, it mentions "Featuring Otis" underneath the Shooters. That would be Otis Redding along with the Shooters! This is one of his early records and was first issued as the Shooters featuring Otis. In 1961, it was issued again on the Finer Arts label as Otis Redding and the Shooters. Though it's not a difficult record to find, it did not sell really well on either label.
Little Cindy - Salem - Blue
Little Cindy - Salem - Yellow
This set of record labels is still a work in process. The labels are represented, though additional variations exist. Further, my order may be revised in the future, as I start with more theory than fact. Little Cindy had a decent selling Christmas record called "Happy Birthday Jesus", which consisted of a lot of talking by a young girl. My initial lineup for this recording, is to start with the Salem label. In my case it is blue, and importantly, has "He's Around When Everybody Turns You Down" by Little Cindy, on the flip. PRP-551 is shown on the label and etched in the dead wax. There must have been enough demand to press the record that they had to get assistance from Columbia as the ZTSP 81244 appears which is Columbia's letter prefix for their custom pressings. Columbia pressed the yellow Salem label records because Salem likely could not keep up with the demand.
Little Cindy - Mart Green
Little Cindy - Columbia Stock
The next label was Mart records, shown in the same city as Salem records - Salem VA. These were also custom pressings by Columbia, and also had the same flip side as the Salem issues. There are other colors and variations of Mart. Lastly, Columbia issued it on their own label, but changed to ZSP 45258. They also put "Blue Christmas" by the Willis Sisters on the flip.
Johnny Jenkins Love Twist Tifco
Johnny Jenkins Gerald
Johnny Jenkins may not be a household name, but he should be on the list of artists that deserved way more credit then they ever received. Jenkins was originally from Macon Georgia, and his band the Pinetoppers, had a great sound. They recorded Love Twist in what looks to be early 1962, for the Tifco label. This label was owned by James Newton, and he along with Gus Grant, produced it. The flip is Pinetop, both instrumentals, and the record is really a great two sider. The second of three releases is on the Atlanta based Gerald label, which was owned by Joe Galkin. Galkin started the label in 1949 and recorded several gospel sides by the Echoes Of Zion, from 1949 to 1950. He made a deal with Modern records of Los Angeles, and does not appear to have issued any additional vinyl until this record in 1962. Oh, and Joe Galkin just happened to be the southern region promotional man for Atlantic records.....
I'm sure a whole lot of convincing took place to get Galkin's employer to issue this record on Atlantic. It must have worked, as the record was released in 1962. Local station WAKE in Atlanta had it at number 23 in March of 1962, and I'm sure there were other stations playing it. Above I show both sides of the Atlantic release.
solitaires Old Town
solitaires Argo
The Solitaires were an amazing doo wop group. They had a rich vocal group sound and had their first record on Old Town in 1954. I should be saying that this was a huge 1957 hit record, but it wasn't. Sure it got airplay on some stations, and it was the original version of the song. The Diamonds covered it in 1958 and had a number 29 Billboard pop hit with it. Interestingly, both the Diamonds and the Solitaires versions charted on WJJD Chicago in 1958. The original record came out in 1957 on the Old Town label, and reissued on Argo in 1958, likely to compete again with the Diamonds version.
Dickey Lee Stay True Tampa
Dickey Lee Stay True Rendezvous
When you talk about Dickey Lee, usually superstar comes up in the conversation. Yes, he had pop, country, tragedy songs ("Patches" and "Laurie."), but he also had some straight ahead rock and roll, and perhaps rockabilly, not to mention he recorded for Sun. My favorite early record is this one, "Stay True Baby", for Tampa records in 1957. OK, so the hit side was the flip, "Dream Boy", but, you know. I love this side. Tampa was the first issue, and the label was from Los Angeles, later to be Hollywood. It was revived in 1962 for the Rendezvous label, also from Los Angeles. Maybe it was issued because Dickey Lee was hot in 1962 with "Patches" and other records. The same song and what sounds like the same take is on both records.
Unique Teens Ivy
Unique Teens Hanover
Carl Petress and the Unique Teens had a great two sided record in 1958. "Jeannie" got most of the play, but I love "At The Ball." WMGM 1050 in New York showed it on their last quarter of 1958 charts for a total of nine weeks. Other east coast stations also ran it up and down their surveys too. Ivy was the first issue, and the label was based in New York. It really had just a few records before folding up. Hanover, also based in New York, on the other hand, must have purchased this one from Ivy and issued it themselves. None of the other Ivy discs show up in the Hanover catalog. Hanover produced a sizable amount of records, and I always felt they produced "Fun" records that were enjoyable and covered many different styles.
Steve Gibson Casa Blanca
Steve Gibson Hunt
Though you might not guess it from the label credits, this is one smooth doo wop record. Steve Gibson and the Original Red Caps were established and can easily be traced back to the early 1940's. Vocal as shown is by George Tinley, and the female voice that really sets the record off with that call and response effect, is likely Joan Proctor. Casa Blanca issued the first press 9/59 and Hunt picked it up 10/59. Casa Blanca may be best known for the original pressing of "Everybody Outta The Pool" by the Lifeguards in 1959. Hunt, which was distributed by ABC, were known for several hit records starting with the Quintones in 1958, and issued it as they already had the national distribution in place.
Payments Kit
Payments Landa
Baker Knight was an amazing songwriter, and just happened to record a bunch of records, too. He wrote songs for Ricky Nelson, Ray Peterson and Dean Martin. In the 1970's he was also writing for country artists. All that time, he continued to record singles. He never had a smash hit singing, but plenty of his compositions were extremely successful. The Payments were one of his groups, and he was featured on "Brand New Automobile". Originally on Kit, the same label name but does not look like the same label that "Bring My Cadillac Back" was released on, before Decca picked it up. This time, Landa tried to get some action on it, though they were not a very big label themselves. Located in Philadelphia, their total output was less than 40 records. Also of note, the flip, Cantina, was issued as by the Tronics on an earlier Landa disc. Pressed in 1962.
Sonny Knight Starla
Sommy Knight Original Sound
Sonny Knight may be from Maywood, Illinois, but I consider him to be all Los Angeles. He moved there in the early 1950's and instead of going after an academic career, he wandered over to music and song writing. His first recording was for Aladdin, and was a cool novelty called "But Officer" released in 1952, and then again on Aladdin in 1957. In 1958 Art Laboe issued Once In A While/School's Out on his Starla label. The Starla label was short lived and Laboe started the Original sound label that was much more successful. He issued this one again on his "New" Original Sound label, but still no action. Of note, at least the first four issues of the Original sound label were still called "Original Sound." Some references just call it "Original" records, but it clearly shows Original Sound on the label.
Prodigals Falcon Marsha
Prodigals Marsha Abner
The Prodigals were originally from West Virginia, an all black eight piece self contained group that sang and played their own instruments. In 1957 they changed their name to the Chords, changed a few members, and became a racially mixed group, in a time that it was not very popular to do so. They ended up signing to the Falcon label of Chicago in late 1958, but had a problem with the current name. It was changed to the Prodigals, and they cut "Marsha" the uptempo side, and "Judy" the ballad. "Judy" sold regionally for the group, including Pittsburgh, Chicago and the Midwest. Falcon was a subsidiary of Vee Jay, and was created in 1957. Unfortunately there was another fairly big label in Texas already called Falcon, that most notably had Baldemar Huerta (Freddy Fender) on it's roster and was located in Mission Texas. This Falcon label above had issues 1000 through 1013 before they switched to the Abner label. The name Abner was created after VJ President, Ewart Abner. At least two records released on Falcon, were also carried over to Abner. The Prodigals disc, and Jerry Butler's classic "For Your Precious Love." Notice also that the Falcon 1011 is still shown at the bottom of the label of the Abner release above.
Prodigals Tollie Marsha
Marsha Trade Ad
Oddly, in 1964, the record was re-released on Tollie, another subsidiary of Vee Jay. It was short a lived subsidiary, created in February 1964, and they closed their doors in May of 1965. In the August 15, 1964 issue of Billboard magazine, the Tollie issue was reviewed under "Spotlight Winners Of The Week: Rhythm And Blues." It never appeared again after that issue, and that was it. Tollie was most famous for releasing a few Beatles discs, and maybe the Halloween disc by Jimmy Cross!
Jan Bradley -Curfew Blues Formal
Jan Bradley -Curfew Blues Chess
"Mama Didn't Lie" was a huge seller for Jan Bradley. Prior to that, her first release on the formal label in 1962 had "Curfew Blues" on the flip of "We Girls." It's a fun upbeat record, and was actually issued on Formal 1014 and as shown 1015. It was later issued on Chess in 1964, a few releases after her big hit, which incidently was also pressed on Formal and the Chess.
Don Ralke - Space Flight Ever Green
Don Ralke - Space Flight Space Age
I don't actively collect Don Ralke records, but having a large collection, you just have to know your possess records from him. He probably appeared or was credited on hundreds, maybe thousands of discs. This one caught my eye. When I saw he had "Space Flight" on the first issue of Ever Green records, I was intrigued. The second record for the label was Larry Hall with "Sandy". About as fast as it came out, it was moved to the Hot label, as Ever Green was showing being discontinued. This Ever Green issue has a delta date code of 29258. Issued possibly the first week of May 1959, it was the most interesting side. It has a picture of an alien, referred to as Mr, B Geebers from the planet Jubilee. It has a male voice alternating with a chipmunk sounding voice with a few interruptions of an otherwise instrumental recording. The flip is an instrumental crediting Ralke and the Rockin Rajahs, it has no alien and no Mr. B Geebers. The Space Age label looks like it was issued about a week later on delta 29334. No Alien, no Mr. B Geebers, but a similar green color. And, all those breaks in the record that had the alien, all now have just the male voice, calling out different cities in the USA. That is, until the end, when somebody's home address is mentioned. It just happens to be 2050 Westridge Rd. in Pacific Palisades CA (Brentwood). That home was built in 1959 coincidentally, and I just wonder who was the first owner of the house was? The flip was by a different artist, Gail Abbot, with a pop sound to it.
Francettes He's So Sweet Sleeper
Francettes He's So Sweet Wolfie
The Francettes originally were formed by Frances Gray from Jefferson High School in Los Angeles . Their first release was "Cradle Love" on Besche from 1963. Sounding a little like the Ikettes, their next release was on the Sleeper label, showing as a Wolfie production. The plug side was "He's So Sweet" backed with "I'm Leaving You." It was then released on the Wolfie label, also in 1963, which just happened to be home to the Perez Brothers, Baby Lloyd, and Billy Joe and the Chessmen. Stock copies are shown on each, and both can also be found on promotional labels.
Castaleers Planet
Castaleers That's Why I Cry Donna
The Castaleers were from Rhode Island. Several great artists hailed from that state including Gerry Granahan and the Videls. Their first incarnation was in 1952 and they called themselves the Parakeets. You know, another bird name group. They recorded three discs for the Felsted label before starting their own label, Planet. This was a different label than the Capris Planet label where the original "There's A Moon Out Tonight" was issued. The Planet issue originally was pressed in late 1960 with no record number on it, and what appears to be an "I" instead of an "L" in their name. The number 44 was added shortly after the first production run of records, staying with an often used practice of not starting with the number "1". It must have made it look like the label was already well established. Somehow, the Muff Brothers (The Producers and likely managers of the Castaleers) got Donna records interested in the record, and it was released in 1961 on their label from Los Angeles.
Five Discs - I Remember Emge
Five Discs - I Remember Vik
The Five Discs were a great group from the Bedford-Stuyvesant district of Brooklyn New York. They recorded a few demos at Bell Sound Studios in New York,and shopped them around. They ended up at a relatively new label called Emge, and decided on "I Remember" for their first record. Issued on Gene And Bob Schwartz's Emge label, it was a big hit on the East Coast, garnering a lot of play in Boston especially on WHIL 1430 AM. Because it was a small label, distribution was an issue, along with money of course. They leased it to VIK, which was a subsidiarity of RCA, and it promptly did nothing. And the label went broke. The Five Discs were zero for two on the record labels.
Five Discs - I Remember Rust 1
Five Discs - I Remember Rust 2
The Schwartz brothers were involved with the Laurie label, and had Dion And The Belmonts,who were getting most of their time. Rust was an affiliate of the new Laurie label, and it was the third label to release the record, this time in 1960. The first issue of Rust had the reference to Andie - which issued a dozen or so records before changing it's name to Rust - and was blue. Later Rust releases were multi-colored as shown above right.
Storm Trio Wonderful Lover Kieth
Storm Trio Wonderful Lover Jubilee
The Storm Trio is not well documented. The members of the group are still unknown to me, but perhaps the writer on this, or others sides, might provide some clues. My guess is that they were either based in Chicago or Detroit. There was an earlier Theron label release from Chicago. It might be possible that this is Adele Storm- United Music Operators secretary - and a local lounge singer, along with a two person backup group. "Wonderful Lover" was issued about November 1957, and was reviewed in Billboard. The first issue was on Kieth records shown as from Boston, before being picked up by Jubilee. The first issues showed "Wonderful Lover" per the Kieth issue, later it was changed to "My Wonderful Lover." Coincidently, the flip side started as "Ma Ma Rock And Roll" and changed to "Mama Never Taught Me How To Rock & Roll."
Haryy Croc O Dolls Exec
Haryy Croc O Dolls RCA
Harry and the Croc-O-Dolls. I really don't know anything about Harry and the group, but for some reason, the Impacts recording of Croc O Doll comes to mind, in artist vs. title only. Anyway, this is a novelty song, song being used lightly since there is more talking than singing on the disc. It came out originally on what looks like an extremely low budget label called Exec Records. "Cheeta (Teach Me How To Do The Monkey)" was the plug side, and RCA had enough interest to add it to their label and distribute it nationally. Though a really fun record, it didn't seem to make an impact on radio stations or the record buying public.
Lapels Sneakin Around Melker 1
Lapels Sneakin Around Melker 2
The song "Sneakin Around" can be traced back to Rudy Render, recorded in 1949 for London records and written by Jessie Mae Robinson. Robbie Bradley played piano on these recordings and is specifically credited on the flipside of the Dot label record shown below. The vocal group the Lapels recorded it in 1960 on the Melker label, owned by Jessie Mae Robinson. The second pressings of the Melker recording showed distribution by the powerhouse Dot records near the bottom of the label, above right. Melker has at least four records to their credit, including two from the Lapels.
Lapels Sneakin Around Dot 1
Lapels Sneakin Around Dot 2
When issued on Dot, the familiar date shows at the bottom of 8-60, and credit to Melker records is shown below that. The flip, is "Sneaky Blues" and although mostly instrumental, the vocal group can be heard in the background at certain points of the record. A nice two sided record that had three star reviews in Billboard magazine in their September 5th 1960 edition. It was listed under the "Good Sales Potential" section and both sides were mentioned favorably.
Ray Johnson - Miss Marty Goad
Ray Johnson - Miss Marty Imperial
Ray Johnson was from the New Orleans area, and his brother was Plas Johnson. They both ended up in California and were both in-demand session players. Ray Johnson was the session pianist on many stars records, including Ricky Nelson. Songs Ray Johnson had included "Yellow Mellow Hardtop", "Love A La Mode", "Gonna Roll Lucky Seven Tonight", and the list goes on and on. It would take all day to figure out and credit Ray Johnson with all the records he was involved with. This is just one of them, "Miss Marty." Released in late 1960, the first label was Goad. Goad records appears to have just had records by Ray Johnson on it. The disc must have made enough noise in Los Angeles, that Imperial picked it up for national release.
Sharps 6 Months Tag
Sharps 6 Months Chess
Original members of the Sharps from Los Angeles included Carl White, lead, Al Frazier ,baritone, Sonny Harris,baritone, and Rocky Wilson,bass. The first three had sung with the Lamplighters. Heck, those guys sang with a ton of groups in the Los Angeles area during their amazing careers. In late 1957 they got together and recorded a song penned by Mexican DJ Daddy-O Dan Reveles. They recorded it on his label called Tag records, done in Jake Porter's studio (Think Combo Records) and the first version of "Six Months,Three Weeks,Two Days And An Hour." The initial Tag label version had an opening falsetto note by Carl White that was full of distortion. Later pressings on Tag eliminated the opening by fading it in, as did the Chess label issues, both their promo and stock copies.
V Classics Arc
Five Classics A
Really nice doo wop here! This is the V Classics and the smooth sounding "My Imagination." Not the Quotations song, it's a totally different piece. Shown above, the "Arc" and "A" labels were both related to each other. I have a theory, in spite of ARC showing a generic National distribution statement with Allied on it's label. I believe "Arc" was the first label. The record started getting some spins on ARC, it was issued on "A", the group name was changed from using the roman numeral "V" to the more normal "Five", and there was a distribution deal with Madison records for the "A" label. Billboard reviewed "My Imagination" on June 5, 1961, and it received four stars, which is impressive. Billboard did not hand those out often. It was shown in Billboard on the"A" label, but I don't see it listed in a subsequent Billboard issue. This did gets spins on KYA in San Francisco starting in June of 1961 when it debuted at number 58.
Frank Sandy Tarrantela Rock Fine
Frank Sandy Tarrantela Rock MGM
Though "Tarrantela Rock" may have been the intended "B" side, it was clearly the rock and roll sound that deserved to be the "A" side - which was a loungy "Somebody Loves Me." Fine records was based in Rochester New York, and issued well over 100 discs from the 1950's into the 1970's. Most of it is fairly obscure, and they covered all typed of music while they were at it. This disc was with the group listed as the Kings Men, another great record called "Let's Go Rock And Roll" called his group the Jackals. This was ordered by Fine records in December of 1957, thus a likely 1958 release, and made enough noise to be picked up by MGM for a national release.
Craftys - Love - Lois
Craftys - Love - 7 Arts
The Craftys, undoubtedly named after label owner Morty Craft, who also seemed to share writing credits with Craftys member Arthur Crier, were also known as the Halos, and about a dozen other names. Their Song L-O-V-E was issued in 1961 and ended up on the bubbling under charts at position 104. Many times, label owners like Leo Rogers or in this case Morty Craft, would issue records on a one time label they would create to see if they gained any interest. I believe that happened with the Lois release above. A pop sounding group called the Candysticks was on the flip. Once official "interest" was detected, he put it on his already established 7 Arts label. And further, the next 7 Arts release was by the Halos (Nag) and was the same group as the Craftys. It did significantly better peaking on Billboard at number 25.
Doles Dickens-Lincoln
Doles Dickens-Dot
Doles Dickens was born in North Carolina, and moved to New Jersey early on. He formed the Doles Dickens Quartet in 1946, and continued to record throughout the 1950's. Above is his last release in 1958, and as Billboard described it in the April 14th, 1958 edition, the record had "The Sound Of Hysteria......The Quality Of A Jungle War Dance." You have to hear it to believe it. Originally issued on the Lincoln label, Dot picked it up for distribution.
Jerry Raines initial record earned three stars for each side in the February 22, 1960 edition of Billboard magazine. I prefer "Dangerous Redhead" though the side that was pushed is "Our Teenage Love." It was originally released on the Morgan City, LA label called Dre-Blan, named somewhat after the label owner Andrew Blanco. The record enjoyed regional success on stations like WNOE in New Orleans and WAIP in Prichard, Alabama.
The record is on Tamla, writer credits to Smokey and Berry Gordy, but who was Ron and Bill? None other than Ronnie White and Bill "Smokey" Robinson, both members of the Miracles. The first issue was on Tamla and dates from June of 1959. Chess/Argo got into it around October of the same year.
The Merced Blue Notes you have to hear to believe. They did have airplay, though mostly on the west coast. KXOA in Sacramento and KJR in Seattle were just two of the stations spinning the Merced Blue Notes wax. "Rufus Jr." branched out with play in Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Burbank and of course, Los Angeles. Mammoth records issued this first in 1965, and Galaxy took over later that year. Perhaps the most popular band to ever come out of Merced, California.
I have always enjoyed the recording of "Let's Take A Ride" by C.L. And The Pictures. Out of Houston Texas, Charles (C.L.)Weldon was on vocals along with his brother Larry. It's easy to see why some people think CL would be Curtis Lee who recorded on Dunes records, but it's not. Sabra records was based in Texas and was the first label, and was issued in 1961. It went to Dunes in February of 1962. They had a really good sound and had an exceptional doo wopy ballad called "I'm Sorry."
"Lover Boy" was originally issued on the Ditto label as the "A"side in December of 1956. Bally took over in February of 1957. When they did take over, they decided the flip side "My Heart Has A Mind Of It's Own" should be the "A" side. Though not pictured, it is interesting to note that some of the Bally 45's are signed by Carol Jarvis on the "My Heart Has A Mind Of It's Own" side. My guess is that she may have had a record signing party at one of her many appearances. Though this record didn't chart, her disc "Rebel" did, and it came right after this release.
From 1960, the Ineligibles had a record called "Do The Groove." Nice record but it didn't seem to make any noise. Based on the record labels and minimal information available, I suspect the M.J.C. release was first. The Capella issue lists the M.J.C. info on the label along with using the same number. Bobby Day had involvement with writing credits and production. Marty Cooper owned the label, and artists might be Bobby Day and Earl Nelson.
Originally released in April of 1957, Dion and the Timberlanes recording of "The Chosen Few" came out on the Mohawk label, and was issued again with a different take on the Jubilee label in August of 1957. The record didn't sell well.
Another record that never made the top 100 in Billboard, when it first came out, Adonis had appointed this disc by the Four Coachmen "Shalom" as the "A" side and "Swamp Legend" was on the backside. Billboard featured "Swamp Legend"as a Spotlight Winner Of The Week on April 4th, 1960. Adonis then started promoting it that way in Billboard, and it didn't seem to catch fire, except maybe at KELP in El Paso Texas where it got up to number two on their June 11, 1960 survey. Part of the issue is just how long it kept appearing on charts, never gathering enough momentum at once.
The Stellar issue came out in 1961, likely before the Dot release in November of 1961. Billboard acknowledged that the record had been around a while and gave it four stars and showed it on Dot records. Dot also promoted it heavily, sent it out to radio stations, and got some additional airplay on it, thus contributing to the long run it had, but no huge success.
Hearts J&S
Hearts Zells
This is the Hearts 1966 recording of (A) "Thousand Years From Today", originally on the J&S label out of New York. The A side was actually "I Feel Good" for J&S, but I just preferred this side. The label also has a variation of larger J And S letters that are a little scripty. The Zells label release was issued in 1970. It comes in a few different colors including a darker green and a lighter green.
Ziggy Gonzales Glen
Ziggy Gonzales Popside promo
So, I had not heard of Ziggy Gonzalez until I saw a record for sale by him on red plastic. The above record on the left, is perhaps a promo, but does not show it on the label. As mentioned, it is red wax and other issues are on a red label with black wax. The Glen label is out of Chicago, and he had one release prior to this on Glen 5001 called "Fifth Patio." And then there is the spelling of his last name, it shows up with an S on the end of his last name most of the time but there are scattered issues on Glen that use the Z. He was likely from the Chicago area, and recorded for Glen records into the late 1960's. I believe in this instance, the Glen issue was first. Most of his records were on Glen, but Popside, a fairly small label itself, tried issuing it and the disc was announced forthcoming on that label in the August 21, 1961 edition of Billboard.
This record can be confusing when you look at all the iterations that were released. The Le Bill release appears to be the first issue, as shown on my artist name changes page, with Lanar being second, and as Charlie and The Jives. Later issues of the the Le Bill label showed distributed by Roulette . Not only did they distribute, but they also issued it on the Roulette label.
Johnnie Mae Matthews Reel
Johnnie Mae Matthews Sue
From late 1961, here is Johnnie Mae Matthews and "My Little Angel." I bought the record for the flip, "Headshrinker." I could not resist. When Reel released it, "Headshrinker" was the "A" side, but when Sue issued it, "My Little Angel" was plugged. Reel was based in Detroit, Sue was a NYC label, and just one of over 2 dozen singles that Johnnie Mae Matthews made in her career. Early on, she was part of the Detroit vocal group called the Five Dapps, on the Brax label and made one recording. She formed her own label, Northern Recording Company, and had two more records with top billing, that included the Dapps vocal group.
From Chicago, the Ideals actually formed around 1952 while they were freshmen in High School. They chose their name from the Ideal Metal Company. "The Gorilla" was first released on Howard Pitman's Cortland label in September of 1963. He supposedly sold 20,000 copies "Out Of His Car", before selling it to Cortland. Seems like a rather high number to me. This is not the same group that recorded for Checker.
Updates: There you have it. So many records came out on a small label and then moved on the a national label when their record showed so much promise. In some cases, records went from one small label, to another that was not much bigger. The possibilities seem endless Keep checking back. As i find them, I will post for all to see.
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